St Joseph’s in the Morning: Elkader, IA. 

St Joseph’s in the Morning: Elkader, IA. 

Fall Sunrise at the Cabin an Hour apart. I love the Fall and Spring for their very long sunrises easing from the deep blues & purples through oranges. 

Take at Backbone State Park.


Antonio Giulio Bragaglia. The Cellist, 1913. Gelatin Silver print


Antonio Giulio Bragaglia. The Cellist, 1913. Gelatin Silver print

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found here:


found here:

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A mirror installation at Tokyu Plaza Omotesando Harajuku.
A mirror installation at Tokyu Plaza Omotesando Harajuku.

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Syd Mead (Conceptual illustrations), Blade Runner [And related earlier art), c. 1980.

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Since I spent the evening sitting around I took a couple shots as the sun set. I almost missed the golden hour entirely waiting in line for the bathroom. 

  1. Full Light
  2. Golden Hour
  3. Blue Hour

jamessasek asked: <3 Froggie et al: Any tips on photography in super bright direct light? I'm talking the desert at midday. Everything is blown out in the bright parts and no detail is left in the shadows. For landscapes I've done bracketing and stitched but that's not ideal, especially for snapshots or portraits.


I’m afraid that is just a bad time of day for photography. The smaller the light source, the harder the light becomes. The sun is technically huge, but it is about as far away as it gets and in photography terms it is a pretty small, but very bright light source. When it is directly overhead, its light isn’t diffused very much by the atmosphere. Meaning shadows have very sharp edges, color saturation is kind of ugly, and it just makes pictures pretty blah in general.

Most pros will tell you that you should plan to take your shots early in the morning or a bit before sunset. But sometimes you don’t really have a choice when you take the picture, so you have to figure out ways to make a compelling image despite the challenge of the harsh light. 

For landscapes…

One thing to try is a circular polarizer. This will make the skies bluer and increase contrast and saturation.

Sometimes black and white can really take advantage of the high contrast of that kind of lighting. You can also try an infrared filter to give it a different effect. 

Another option is HDR. Not the weird disco LSD HDR. There is a method sometimes referred to as “detail enhancement.” This will make your textures pop and give your image a little extra something that counteracts the blah-ness. 

And if there are clouds, you might try doing a super long exposure using a small aperture and a very strong ND filter. This will cause some cool streaking that is pretty nifty. 

For portraits…

You can actually use flash in the day time. The problem is that you are competing with the sun, and in the desert that can be tricky. There are flash brackets that allow you to put three flashes on at once. Shoot that through an umbrella and you get a nice soft light on your subject, and the background goes all dark and dramatic. This video by Matt Granger is a pretty good demonstration. 

A cheaper solution is to get a large scrim. This is basically a translucent white material that will soften the sunlight. Hold it over top your subject and you can counteract the hard light of the sun. Then get a nice reflector and bounce sunlight off of it to give your subject a nice warm glow. This is really cool because with two cheap accessories you can control the sun.

This video, also by Matt, shows how to use the scrim. And this one shows how to use a reflector. Personally I think using both techniques at the same time can give you even better results. 

Good to know.


Paul Himmel - Grand Central


Paul Himmel - Grand Central

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We decided to go for a walk and complete theartassignment's “#5. Quietest Place - Jace Clayton

1. Go outside and talk a walk from where you live or are staying at the moment. 

2. Continue until you’ve found the quietest place possible.

3. Take a moment to absorb it. Then document the place through photography or video. Upload it to your social media platform of choice.

I enjoyed the video and responses so far and it got me thinking about how the meaning of ‘quiet’ changes quite a bit with a 10 month old running around. It’s more of a watchful quiet. We didn’t have to go too far to get a good quiet spot to sit and thinking about quietness!

Went to Old MacDonald’s Farm in Cedar Rapids with the family this weekend and took some farm pics.

boy i really wish the GoPro’s shot in RAW. maybe soon. i attached the camera to the luggage rack on my MGB on my way into work with a 2 second auto shoot to capture these.

  • i dodged the sun and warmed it up a bit. i also warmed the white balance.
  • I lightened the car in the foreground to bring out the golden color.
  • i also darkened and saturated the blue parts of the sky in the top right.
  • the distortion and vignetting i left the same. i did some stuff to remove it but liked them better as shot.

I’m not very happy with the added grain and distortion added due to editing a .jpg. I wonder if i can get a mount for my DSLR and 10mm lens with auto shot. humm.

me testing software without coffee.